Friday, February 20, 2009

A creek near Dubai

Thought I would post a few more flamingo photographs from my trip to the United Arab Emirates last November as I’m still catching up on the editing of some images. The tidal creek of Ras al Khor (also known as Khor Dubai, or more fully as Ras al Khor Wildife Sanctuary) is just five miles from the city of Dubai and is a protected reserve with rich mudlflats and 24-hour police security. Can any reserves in Britain boast this? The obvious draw is the flocks of Greater Flamingos but on the day I visited it was difficult to know where to look! Species noted included: Great Egret (21), Western Reef Egret (20+), Little Stint (1500+), Broad-billed Sandpiper (6+), Lesser Sand Plover (600+), Greater Sand Plover (10+), Kentish Plover (150+), Terek Sandpiper (1), Caspian Tern (14), Dunlin (200+), Curlew Sandpiper (13), Common Redshank (10+), Greenshank (10+), Temminck's Stint (1), Grey Heron (11), Little Green Bee-eater (4), Little Egret (1), Black-winged Stilt (10+), Greater Flamingo (35), Red-wattled Lapwing, Ringed Plover, Sandwich Tern (3), Spotted Redshank (1), Great Cormorant (12+), Northern Pintail (3), Northern Shoveler (3), Common Snipe (30+), Bar-tailed Godwit (4+), Curlew (15+), Eurasian Teal (30+), Mallard (40+), Grey Plover (1), and Black-headed Gull. On the raptor front, two Greater Spotted Eagles soaring in the same field of view of the World's tallest building was something else, but three Ospreys and a Marsh Harriers competed in the top predator stakes!

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